Did you know that you can make a difference everyday to combat human trafficking? The good news is that we can! One way to do this is to begin what some call "ethical consumption." This simply means that we practice Jesus' ethic of love in our buying habits. It is much easier said than done, but small steps can begin to make a big difference.
Did you know that many of the products that we buy are often made by the hands of slaves? Many products today and even the food and drinks we consume come to us from the hands of child labor, forced labor, and very oppressive working conditions.
And let's be honest we, in the United States, live in a culture of consumerism. We are bombarded daily with hundreds and hundreds of advertisements beckoning us to spend our money on this or that. It does not take long before we give in and buy something.
But what if the things we spent our money on could help those being trafficked?
Our money has great power. If we buy slavery-made products then the producers will continue to profit from the oppression of others. Yet, if we refuse to buy slavery-made items we can use our money and voice to say that we will not tolerate slavery and demand better from our producers, retailers and society as a whole.
Some practical steps:
- Buy less. We don't always have to have the newest clothes and newest fashions, instead we can become about simplicity and generosity.
- Buy fair-trade (especially coffee and chocolate.) It's true that fair trade products cost more, but the workers are being paid a fair price for their work. Also let us consider that when we buy the cheapest products we can, we may be saving but someone else, usually the worker, is the one paying the price.
- Buy products made by survivors to help support and empower them.
- Demand your favorite producers to be ethical and justly in their work (Visit http://chainstorereaction.com to hold businesses accountable.)
Grace and peace,